East Texas has had its fair share of fame. Stretched across the different counties of East Texas we can think of names like former football player Earl Campbell, country and western singer George Jones, as well as the oil industry that have brought fame to the lovely rolling hills of eastern Texas.
But there is some fame that is unwanted. When it comes to the likes of Drew Brees (who was just voted Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman of the Year), Justin Bieber, or IPod and IPad creators Apple Inc. there is nothing but positive images and good publicity.
Now what comes to mind when you think of Charlie Sheen? Not good. Or, what about Tigger Woods? Keep a low profile. Do I even need to mention Linsay Lohen? The type of fame that has been following these guys is definitely not the type of fame that you want. Unfortunately for East Texas that type of unwanted fame has come to town and it’s reared its monster head here for a while.
Since 2003 East Texas has become home to a growing number of “patent trolls” and patent infringement litigations. Simply put, these “patent trolls” look to buy patents from struggling businesses in order to target larger, successful businesses using inventions connected to the patent in order to sue for patent infringement.
Due to appealing rules, conditions, and favorable decisions for plaintiffs in the courts of Marshall, Texarkana, and Tyler, East Texas has become famous for hosting these patent trolls and their unethical way of gaining wealth.
East Texas has a long history of mostly positive publicity and reputation, but if care is not taken to deal with this growing weed of unwanted fame, that image can change.